Half-Nekkid Thursday : blood, mud and a team of my buds

Fall soccer season has begun.


Although there wasn’t much mud this past weekend, soon enough the grass covering the goal area will get chewed up from the cleets of forwards and defenders fighting for the ball.   As the picture illustrates, I shed some blood during the game, due to a failed save attempt where I ground my knee into the fine gravel underlying the grass in the goal box.  Yes, they patch the holes with gravel because they understand how much goalies love to shed blood for their sport.

It was a close game but we lost, 6-5.  We played hard, but couldn’t find a way to shut down their offense.  I’m not always in a bad mood after a loss.  If it’s a well fought battle, it feels good regardless the resulting score.  In the aftermath of this game, however, I was down.

Our offense was strong with all 5 of our goals coming from different players.  On their side, most of the 6 goals scored on me came the same two players, fast decisive forwards who broke through my defense and forced me into one-on-one situations.  There were two goals I feel I should have stopped, one of them resulted in the knee damage above and would have been prevented by the simple act of me getting my body in the way of the ball, instead of relying on my hand alone.  The other was a shot aimed just under the crossbar.  I jumped up and had a hand on the ball, which nevertheless pushed its way into the net.  I just couldn’t seem to get into the zone enough to do the kind of damage I come to expect of myself.

It wasn’t just me who couldn’t get in the zone.  Our forwards and midfield was mostly brilliant but my defensive line wasn’t playing the way it normally does.  We just couldn’t find our groove.  And so, even with such a close game and a good number of goals scored by our side, we walked off the field without our usual good spirits.

I really hope we get it together for next week, and lord I hope we get a substitute or two (we often play without subs).  We’ll be playing our arch-rivals and a team that often dominates our league.

Let’s hear it for the underdogs.

Happy HNT everyone :-)

To see all the other HNT posts for the day, go to Views from the Back Row, from whence the HNT goodness has come.

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